Stored Media / Sabbath


John and Marcia were very generous with their embarrassment of stored media riches. I gave them a copy of Neighborhood Rhythms, and they filled a paper shopping bag with some of John’s and his friends’ work from over the years — poets working in and around the Los Angeles from the 1960s onwards. I’m only now getting through it.

One of the works they gave me is a beautiful collection by a poet named William Pillin. I’m reproducing one of its poems, Sabbath, at the end of this post.

As we move away from stored media, will we also move away from the cull and share cycle that came along with them? Or is there a way to share the metadata of our digital files that does the same?

We can stick with DRM, but it would be nice to have a universal standard (don’t laugh) for a digital library. There’s no reason the metadata of the media we own have to be encrypted, even if some of the content does.

Not the prescribed movement of hands, not the ritual whispers out of antique books with broken bindings, not those you left me, people of blessed candles, but a certain music, a secret between us, so that even I, a pagan in Babylon, celebrate the Creation's completion. I can spare but a few hours for this evening's silence as I can't afford a whole day without labor; and the hymns I sing are alas, not Zemirot, the Sabbath hymns, but snatches of Handel, an Anglican rabbi; but I will praise the Indwelling Glory, putting, however briefly, my trials behind me, putting, however briefly, Egypt behind me. I will not stint, I will provide of the finest. The floors will be scrubbed, the furniture polished. With choice meat and hallot I will praise Thee, aye, with a double portion of manna, with broiled fish, with a goblet of brandy. Overlook therefore the profane, the informal. Send Shabbath Shalom, the peace of the evening, to us who are doing their ignorant best at this altar; son, wife and husband basking at twilight in the tender effulgence of grandmother's candles.

Google Instant Upload’s Nag:
“Make That Photo Public”

Apparently, this has been loudly complained about from at least Aug. 27, 2011 through as late as Sep. 15, 2013:!topic/google-plus-discuss/JolYBcJmzWs

The successor function.
g + 1 = S(g)


In Canada, it turns out that we even own photos we took for someone else.

Why you want to mess with my photos, Google?

How To Autopost From WordPress to Google+ [UPDATED!!1!]


something happened. Google+ is now super cozy with WordPress. The Sep. 2013 update includes the functionality described below, and lets folks comment using Google+ authentication. Hurray!


Short answer:

you don’t.

“At present Google+ API (released in September 2011) provides read-only access to public data, hence posts only go one way.”

If you read the reviews for the hacky WP extension mentioned there, you discover that it’s totally broken. In the words of a reviewer as of April 2013,

“This worked one time, several months ago, and since then has failed every time. This may not be the fault of the developer, but of Google, who closed the option to post that was exploited by this plugin (not positive that’s the case, but it DID work one time for me).”


There are tons of elegant plugins, with full API support for pushing WP content to your Facebook profile. Isn’t this a barrier to Google+ adoption, or at least a drag on its traction? Or is the Google juggernaut powerful enough to get people to post there natively/manually?


Upstream Color

uc-film-poster1The guy behind Primer has done it again.

If you haven’t seen it, it’s on Netflix — there’s no excuse.

Unlike the idiot reviews that make it sound as if this film is an impressionist painting, all about relativized subjective reflection, this film is chronologically linear. Even the dream sequences are literal, just sometimes internal, or small-scale. From an interview with actor/director/producer/writer/cinematographer/lighting director/etc./etc Shane Carruth:

Piecing together this story takes work. Carruth is good with that.
“My favourite film experience is one that really requires a conversation to really get into what we saw,” he says.

I don’t want to spoil it, but the film is exactly equal parts Prometheus and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Exactly.

What? You don’t agree? What about that ending? And the life cycles of parasites? Let’s agree to disagree.

There’s so many themes in here that it’s hard to navigate them all. One that I’m interested in is an argument that treating mental illnesses entirely as a pathology subject to medical interventions creates two negative outcomes:

  • concrete, external, solvable causes are avoided altogether; and, in consequence,
  • judgements of self-worth are harder to address than they would be otherwise.

Another thing I find interesting is the claim that people can be good at many different things, and express virtues in some but not others. We get a vision that I associate with Paul Johnson’s Intellectuals, of the obsessive artist/scientist who achieves excellence, but ruthlessly manipulates those around them to support their endeavours. So far as I can tell, every major character falls under this type. I think we’re also asked, as I remember Johnson doing, whether we’re all better off having such folks around. Certainly the film suggests positive outcomes unattainable without the major artist/villain, but also satisfies a revenge fantasy involving him.

And it’s beautiful, the sound editing is amazing, the acting is great, the script is very well done.